Skip to main content

Dear Readers, What are the Lies You Tell Yourselves About Reading?

If you're an author, how much time do you spend on promoting your books vis-a-vis writing them? Is book promotion the author's responsibility?

When I’m not writing, I’m reading. How’s that possible, you might ask? You do have to do other things to live, right? True, but with audiobooks, I can read while I’m working out, taking a bath, cooking, gardening, cleaning, you name it.

My first brush with the knowledge of my own mortality came with the realization that I’ll never be able to finish reading all the books I own. (That along with the fact that I developed a crush on a brooding hero only to realize he’s MUCH younger, but that’s a story for another day.)

So, lies. Since I lie for a living, making up stories all the time, it’s not a stretch to keep lying to myself, especially about my reading. I call these my ‘reading lies.’

Not that you asked, but here are the reading lies I tell myself to justify my reading, and my questionable book-buying habits:

  1. I’ll read this chapter and go to sleep.
  2. I’ll go and just browse at the bookstore/ library/ bookfair.
  3. I’ll finish reading everything on my shelves before I go buying the next one.
  4. I’ll come back to this book soon. Right after I read this shiny new one.
  5. I don’t need a basket at the bookstore.
  6. I don’t need signed copies of books I already own.
  7. I won’t download any book samples.
  8. If I have these books right by my bedside, I’ll finish reading them first.
  9. I don’t need to make notes as I read. I’ll magically remember it all for my book review.
  10. I might not ever find this book again for this price.


Reading lies are not that uncommon, I’ve heard. Over time, I’ve come to accept that I’m the sort of reader who likes collecting books, and loves reading books, but there might be a slight lack of overlap between the two. I’m also not a disciplined person when it comes to anything other than my writing. My reading is all over the place, and never enough. It is okay to have reading lies to cover such matters–life is hard enough as it is.

And oh, if you’re the kind who reads character-driven, literary thrillers, my next, THE BLUE MONSOON is on a Goodreads Giveaway right now. Please enter to inflate my count, and make my publisher happy. A happy publisher is good for my well-being, so.

Signed copies are available in select US independent bookstores. THE BLUE MONSOON is a sequel to THE BLUE BAR, but readers tell me it works perfectly as a standalone.

What about you? What are the reading lies you tell yourself? Do you finish everything on your to-be-read list before buying a new book?

My literary crime novel, The Blue Bar is on Kindle Unlimited now. Add it to Goodreads or snag a copy to make my day. The sequel, The Blue Monsoon is up for pre-orders! And if you'd like to read a book outside the series, you can check out You Beneath Your Skin. All info about my books on my Amazon page or Linktree.

My literary crime novel, The Blue Bar is on Kindle Unlimited now. Add it to Goodreads or snag a copy to make my day. The sequel, The Blue Monsoon is up for pre-orders! And if you’d like to read a book outside the series, you can check out You Beneath Your Skin.  Find all info about my books here or on Linktree.
If you liked this post, you can receive posts in your inbox, or keep updated on my writing by clicking on any or all of the following buttons:


Damyanti Biswas

Damyanti Biswas is the author of You Beneath Your Skin and numerous short stories that have been published in magazines and anthologies in the US, the UK, and Asia. She has been shortlisted for Best Small Fictions and Bath Novel Awards and is co-editor of the Forge Literary Magazine. Her literary crime thriller series, the Blue Mumbai, is represented by Lucienne Diver from The Knight Agency. Both The Blue Bar and The Blue Monsoon were published in 2023.

I appreciate comments, and I always visit back. If you're having trouble commenting, let me know via the contact form, or tweet me up @damyantig !

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


  • My main lie is that somehow I’m still keeping up with reading – completely untrue! Until LIMBO is finished – and I estimate several years more (third book in mainstream trilogy) – I’m a writer, and am reading almost nothing new. I don’t have the bandwidth – I need everything I have to make any progress on the writing (disability is very limiting).

    I’ll probably never catch up – and we have a decent library just downstairs at our retirement community! I took out the first of Anne Hillerman’s mystery novels (she took up writing them after her father, Tony Hillerman – they are set in the US, mainly in Navaho country) – and haven’t read a page yet.

  • Simran Seth says:

    This post encourages readers to think more deeply about the role of deception and truth in storytelling and to appreciate the complexities of the human experience. Thank you for sharing this insightful and reflective piece.

  • My difficulty is I always go to the back of a book in store to see if it looks interesting and am very fussy about what I purchase. Probably miss out on a good read by doing that as the summary is not always as good as the story itself. Unfortunately with Netflix and similar platforms most people prefer to watch the story. I think that spoils the imagination bought to play when you read the story as the video is mostly a commercial adaptation of the authors original intent for the reader,

  • Fortunately, I avoid some of those since I am eBook only. And no, I won’t live to read all the books on my iPad.

  • I am all too familiar with many of the lies you tell yourself about reading. No, I will not finish reading all the books I have, but I will die trying. And will also acquire more – no matter what I tell myself.

  • Unfortunately, the awareness that I will never be able to finish reading all the books I own is making me very sad too.

  • DutchIl says:

    Thank you for sharing!!.. I do not have a list of books I wish to read, just have a wide variety of books in my library on my Kindle… I just follow my heart, read when I can (mainly relaxing in the evening) and do not set a goal…. 🙂

    Hope all is well, you have the mostest wonderfulest day ever, every day, and until we meet again…

    May the sun shine all day long
    Everything go right, nothing go wrong
    May those you love bring love back to you
    And may all the wishes you wish come true
    May your troubles be less
    Your blessings be more
    And nothing but happiness
    Come through your door
    (Irish Saying)

  • Love that list of lies. There is nothing better than reading.

  • #3 is the biggest of my reading lies.

%d bloggers like this: